Aga Khan talks madrassa education reform in India

May 13th, 2008 - 8:00 pm ICT by admin  

A file-photo of Pratibha Patil

New Delhi, May 13 (IANS) The Aga Khan, the spiritual leader of Shia Ismaili Muslims, Tuesday called on President Pratibha Patil and discussed reforms in madrassa education in India. The Aga Khan, who is on a week-long trip to India, met the president for about half-an-hour.

According to official sources, the 70-year-old leader - also known as Prince Karim Aga Khan IV - spoke enthusiastically about the need for reforms in Islamic religious schools. “He talked about the possibility of replicating a programme of reform of madrassa education at the Aga Khan’s educational institution in Hyderabad,” said an official.

The Aga Khan arrived here Monday on a visit that marks his 50th year as imam of over 25 million Shia Ismailis worldwide.

He had earlier met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Vice President Hamid Ansari, Congress president Sonia Gandhi and External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee.

He will move to Hyderabad Wednesday and then travel to Mumbai and Ahmedabad.

The Aga Khan last visited India in September 2006, when he laid the foundation of the Aga Khan Academy for Excellence in Education in Hyderabad.

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